“I suppose most poets have been writing since they were youngsters – but I only started in my early 30s.”

Jim Carruth

Jim Carruth

Jim Carruth might only have started writing poetry in his 30s – but he’s come a long way since then, becoming Glasgow’s Makar, or Poet Laureate in July 2014, writes Jackie Macadam.

He’s now authored six books of poetry and has just produced his first full collection, Killochries, which he describes as a ‘verse novella’, created from fragments of poetry that are wound together to form a cohesive story detailing a year in the life of two very different people.

“It’s a book that tells the story of the relationship between two men – one, an elderly farmer, devout in his faith and trusting in God and his old King James Bible; the other, a young man, critical, agnostic and dismissive of the rural way of life, sent to work on the sheep farm by his mother, mainly to dry him out but also to give him a chance to reconsider his somewhat dissolute life.”

“It’s my attempt to convey a coming to faith of someone who embarks on a journey with no clear desire or idea what he wants out of life,” says Jim.

An elder of Freeland Church at Bridge of Weir for over 20 years, Jim sees the book as something he felt he needed to do to give back to the Church in this day and age when it seems to be constantly under attack.

“Some of the commentary and criticism thrown at the church these days, is just terrible. There’s not even an attempt to be balanced in the criticism,” Jim says.

• Read the full feature at Life and Work.